July 24, 2014

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Swisher leads Tribe past ChiSox
Written by Associated Press   
Friday, July 11, 2014 8:00 PM

CLEVELAND (AP) — Corey Kluber allowed four runs in six innings, and Nick Swisher hit a two-run homer in the fifth, leading the Cleveland Indians to a 7-4 win over the Chicago White Sox on Friday night.

Kluber (9-6), left off the AL All-Star team despite a strong first half, wasn’t his usual dominant self but pitched well enough to win. The right-hander has won three of his last four decisions. Cody Allen struck out the side in the ninth for his 11th save.

Swisher’s homer off Hector Noesi (3-7) to center field broke a 4-4 tie. David Murphy also homered for Cleveland, his first since May 21.

Before Swisher’s home run, the biggest cheer from the crowd of 24,652 came when the Indians put a message on the scoreboard welcoming home NBA superstar LeBron James, who announced he was returning to the Cleveland Cavaliers. Chants of “LBJ” were heard later in the game.

Adam Dunn hit a leadoff homer in the fifth for Chicago, which has lost three straight.

The Indians were helped by an overturned call on a replay in the fifth. Asdrubal Cabrera was originally called out trying to steal second, but manager Terry Francona challenged the call, and Cabrera was ruled safe after a review.

Lonnie Chisenhall’s single tied it before Swisher homered to center.

LBJ out to prove you can go home again
Written by Associated Press   
Friday, July 11, 2014 8:00 PM


AP Sports Columnist

This isn’t Brett Favre or Joe Montana, or any other over-the-hill star — insert your own favorite here — shopping teams and/or rosters in search of one last hurrah.

In the NBA, one supremely talented individual can make a world of difference. LeBron James proved as much by carrying his team into five of the last seven NBA Finals. What’s going to make this quest for a championship in Cleveland the best sports story out there for some time is that he’s committed to try and tip the balance of power by himself, if need be, to pay back all those folks who nurtured him from the start.

“My goal is still to win as many titles as possible, no question. But what’s most important for me is bringing one trophy back to Northeast Ohio,” James said in a Sports Illustrated first-person story published Friday announcing his decision to return to the Cavaliers.

“I always believed that I’d return to Cleveland and finish my career there. I just didn’t know when,” he said.

Had James delayed the announcement much longer, the army of in-studio analysts and on-scene reporters deployed by every media outlet on the planet would need catheters to stay on the job. If nothing else, that part of our long national nightmare is over. So what’s worth saying after everything that’s already been said?

LeBron James says he's returning to Cavaliers
Written by Associated Press   
Friday, July 11, 2014 8:47 AM


Associated Press


CLEVELAND — LeBron James is going back to the Cleveland Cavaliers.

James told Sports Illustrated Friday that he's decided to go home. It's a move that would have seemed unfathomable four years ago, after the venomous fallout that followed his decision to leave Cleveland for the Miami Heat.

Soccer camp seeks to instill love of the game
Written by Jim Metcalfe   
Thursday, July 10, 2014 8:12 PM
The Challenger Sports British Soccer Camp returned to the Annex for a youth camp this week. Instructors Sam Warnes (left) and Henry Taylor explain a game/drill to campers Brayden Homes, Alexandra Blatter, Henry Hohman, Brayden Bolenbaugh and Carleigh Ankerman. (DHI Media/Jim Metcalfe)


DHI Media Sports Editor

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DELPHOS — The British have come! The British have come!

That is, the Challenger Sports British Soccer Camp for youth has come to Delphos once again.

The annual event is being held at the St. John’s Annex this week by instructors Sam Warnes and Henry Taylor for youth soccer players age 4 to approximately 11 — with one exception.

Several area soccer players — 11 — have taken advantage of these introductory sessions.

“We focus on passing on Monday, dribbling Tuesday, shooting Wednesday, heading the ball Thursday and defense and tackling on Friday — those are the core skills. That’s what we do every week of every camp,” Warnes began. “We do different drills to emphasize each skill but we try to make it fun in the process. We’re more about making it fun for the campers — we’re lighter on the technical aspects — to either get them interested if they are new to the sport or keep their interest growing if they’ve already been to a camp. Most of the players we have here this week have all told us they’d like to come to another one; that to me is a success.”

With the ongoing World Cup in Brazil, the camp has a World Cup theme.

“After an opening ceremony Monday, we have them wear team colors, like for the United States, Brazil, England, Italy, France. We have them make flags for the closing ceremony on Friday, which we invite their parents to attend,” Warnes said. “We have split this year’s camp up between Henry and I; he takes the 4-6 age group and they leave at 10:30 a.m., while I do the players from 7 to 11-plus. When the younger kids leave, he comes over and helps me with the older children.”

That’s the first time they’ve done this with two instructors for that reason.

“We use silly games, like ‘Islands in the Corner’, ‘Tom and Jerry’ (cat and mouse) and ‘Capture the Flag’ — only in this case it’s capture the soccer balls — instead of just drills, though we do have some of those. Again, it’s all about fun more than techniques, even though you can see the kids improve from the first day to the last.”

Chicago panel approves Wrigley Field upgrade
Written by Associated Press   
Thursday, July 10, 2014 8:10 PM


Associated Press


CHICAGO — Wrigley Field took a step in the direction of every major league ballpark in the country on Thursday when a city commission unanimously approved the Chicago Cubs’ massive renovation project that includes a Jumbotron and six other electronic signs.

The city’s landmarks commission, which must sign off on such plans because Wrigley is so well known, agreed to a renovation project that is dramatically bigger than one approved last year. Besides the Jumbotron above the ivy-covered left-field wall and another electronic sign above the right-field wall that it already approved, the commission agreed to the Cubs’ request to add five more electronic signs, expand the bleachers and build bullpens beneath the bleachers.

The vote came after a 4-hour meeting during which the Cubs and the owners of the rooftop venues across the street engaged in an argument that has become familiar to Chicago over the past few years.

On one side, the Cubs said they need the revenue generated by the signs to help fund the $500 million project and ultimately generate enough money to help the team win its first World Series since 1908.

On the other were the owners of the rooftops, who say the signs violate a contract they have with the Cubs that calls for them to pay the team 17 percent of their gross revenues because the signs would cut into the views of the field they need to survive.

The Cubs, which won approval last year from the commission and later the City Council for a less-extensive expansion project, say they came forward with the new proposal only because the rooftop owners would not rule out filing a lawsuit.

“We learned … the threat of litigation was very real, so we felt if we were going to get sued over two signs, that we felt we were within our rights to proceed with the original proposal,” team spokesman Julian Green told reporters before Thursday’s meeting.